Sawhorse Revolution, a carpentry education and community service group for youth, has raised more than $39,000 to help build structures at Nickelsville, a tent encampment currently located on South Dearborn Street.
The money will be spent to build a number of structures to help make life easier for those living in the encampment, which provides immediate emergency shelter in tents and small structures.
Sarah Smith of Sawhorse said the projects are ideally meant to help Nickelsville reduce its bills.
Nickelsville has to pay for garbage removal, portable toilets and often power to operate.
While the actual structures have not been confirmed yet, Sawhorse is considering building more microhomes, a solar-powered charging shelter and self-composting toilets.
Smith said the plan could change to fit the needs of the encampment.
“We didn’t raise money so they could have a solar thing,” she said. “We raised money so they could have what they need.”
The organization raised the money through indiegogo.com, a crowd funding site to support community projects. It raised $39,154 from 264 people.
Students have already constructed and delivered one sleeping structure for Nickelsville. Another is underway to be delivered this summer. The newly designed microhome will have a raised platform for a bed with storage underneath and a seat near one of the windows with a fold-out desk.
Sawhorse Revolution was formed in 2012, but the people who founded it have been teaching carpentry through summer camps since 2010. Students involved in the nonprofit, after-school program and summer camp have built greenhouses and rabbit houses for community gardens and another small home that is already in use at Nickelsville.
Sawhorse Revolution is a 501(c)(3) that had a budget of $140,000 in 2014 and $190,000 in 2015.